If you’re looking for an original case for Samsung’s flagship S7 edge there are no less than 7 cases, if you include the keyboard cover and the battery case. But for the Tab S2, Samsung’s flagship Android tablet, there are just two options, if you include the keyboard case. The subject of this review is one of the two available cases: the Book Cover.
The Book Cover comes in 5 colors: white, black, ruby wine, gold, mint and costs about 50 dollars (or euros), which isn’t too bad considering what you’re getting. It’s basically the same concept behind the Book Cover Keyboard, but only thinner and lack the included Bluetooth keyboard. It’s also way cheaper as that case about costs three times as much.
With the introduction of the Tab S, Samsung had included two push clips on the back of the tablet to accommodate their new cases. The result was thinner cases that attached more securely to the tablet itself and most importantly allowed the cases to be more versatile when it comes to the amount of positions it can transform into, in fact turning it into a built-in stand! With previous cases the tablet basically had to be clicked into place, which in turn put a limit to what could be done.
With the Tab S2 Samsung is basically using the same formula as the Tab S: two push clips on the back, allowing the case to click into place. The process of actually aligning the case’s push clips with the clips on the back of the tablet is not an easy task and I even was worried that I would scratch the back of the tablet. Thankfully there were no scratches and once the case clicks into place, it remains securely attached, requiring quite a lot of force to get it off. When it comes to the clips, fact remains that these are made out of hard plastic with screws in the middle and attaching it requires force and potentially hard materials rubbing against each other. The result can be some ugly scratches if you’re not careful. Strangely there’s no warning about this in the included manual.
The name “book cover” comes from the fact that the case opens up like a book, with one side attached to the back of the tablet and the other side protecting the screen, sort of like, well, you guessed it: a book. Finally, the flap behind the tablet extends beyond the borders of the tablet and has a magnet on the inside. It’s this magnetic strip that allows for the entire case to the stay closed. It’s a simple solution that works quite well. The end result is an ultra-thin cover, probably the thinnest I’ve ever seen that weighs almost nothing. The tablet itself doesn’t weigh much and luckily the case doesn’t add much to the overall weight.
The Book Cover is made out of synthetic leather, which is expected at this price point, as the real thing could easily double or triple the price. Samsung have struck a nice balance between quality and price: the overall look and feel of the material is top notch and looks like it will last, all while staying around the 50-dollar mark. The case extends beyond the edges of the tablet, protecting it from bumps and other scratches, a technique they use on their smartphone cases. Speaking of protection, considering the thinness, this is obviously not something that’s going to protect your tablet from drops, with the focus clearly being on small bumps and scratches. Cases that offer drop protection for a tablet of this size are much thicker and simply don’t look as good as the Book Cover. Samsung has found the perfect balance between protection and a case that’s ultra-thin and elegant.
Design-wise it looks simple: a flap that protects the screen and an attachment on the back. But looks can be deceiving. The Book cover’s versatility comes from the use of the push clip mechanism. This allows the cover to not only protect the tablet, but also function as a built-in stand with no less than 3 positions! The first position, which lowers the screen to accommodate typing and surfing. This position should be ideal with the tablet sitting on your lap. The second position raises the screen and puts it upright, ideal for media consumption. The last position sits right between the first two: allowing to do some typing, all while having the screen at a comfortable angle. Apart from the case being thin and light, this is probably the main reason I would recommend.
One downside is that when the case is being used as a stand the soft inner lining sits on the surface you put it on. This same inner lining than touches or rubs against the screen. So if you put the stand on a dirty or dusty surface, the soft lining will pick it up and will later smear or rub it all over your screen. As result you should be aware where you place the tablet and case combo or at least clean it often. If it picks up small, it could easily scratch your screen. Not sure if there’s anything Samsung could have done about this, but it’s an important downside to the case and something to consider before you take the plunge.
The camera module sits nicely recessed which should protect it somewhat from scratches or any other damage, something Samsung is known to do on their phone cases. Lastly, Samsung included small but discrete graphic etched into the case, showing the three positions, a friendly reminder of what the case can that comes in handy sometimes. I find myself forgetting how to get a specific position and this small detail helps out a lot.
Overall, if I needed a case for my Tab S2, this would be the case I would get. The price is right, it’s thin, light, offers basic protection and it doubles at a stand. The push clips could potentially scratch the back if you’re not careful. Lastly when functioning as a stand, the inner lining can pick up dirt and put that on your screen. Despites these downsides, this is the best case for the Tab S2 and get a 9.5 out of 10.
Built-in stand with 3 positions
Attaches securely into place
Very thin and light
The push clips can scratch your tablet if you’re not careful.
In stand mode can pick up dirt/dust